Hong Kong – Turning disability into creativity

Turning disability into creativity

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     With the support of the Social Welfare Department’s Arts Development Fund for Persons with Disabilities, artists with disabilities are able to explore their potential and develop careers in performing, visual or creative arts.

     News.gov.hk spoke to two non-governmental organisations to learn more about how the fund helps people with disabilities to unleash their creativity in ceramics and wheelchair dancing.
 
     The story is available at www.news.gov.hk/eng/feature today (October 31) in text and video format.

AEP Receives Top Score on Disability Equality Index, Named a Best Place to Work for Disability Inclusion

American Electric Power (Nasdaq: AEP) received a score of 100 on Disability:IN’s Disability Equality Index (DEI) and was named a Best Place to Work for Disability Inclusion. This is the sixth consecutive year the company was recognized for its commitment to disability inclusion and equality.

The DEI is a benchmarking tool that helps Fortune 1000 companies measure disability workplace inclusion against competitors. AEP’s score was based on its performance in multiple categories including culture and leadership; enterprise-wide access; employment practices (benefits, recruitment, employment, education, retention and advancement, accommodations); community engagement; and supplier diversity. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the DEI added new non-weighted questions about innovative technology to advance digital and remote accessibility; mental wellness benefits; services for Deaf and hard of hearing employees, and flexible work options. AEP was one of 319 companies that received a score of 80 or higher.

 “AEP is proud to receive a top score on the DEI and be recognized as a Best Place to Work for Disability Inclusion for the sixth year in a row,” said Nicholas K. Akins, AEP’s chairman, president and chief executive officer. “This honor is a reflection of our ongoing efforts to create an inclusive work environment for all employees. We’ll continue to transform our company culture and examine our policies and benefits to ensure they empower our colleagues with disabilities.”

Learn more about AEP’s commitment to creating a more diverse and inclusive work culture.

American Electric Power, based in Columbus, Ohio, is focused on building a smarter energy infrastructure and delivering new technologies and custom energy solutions to our customers. AEP’s approximately 16,800 employees operate and maintain the nation’s largest electricity transmission system and more than 223,000 miles of distribution lines to efficiently deliver safe, reliable power to nearly 5.5 million regulated customers in 11 states. AEP also is one of the nation’s largest electricity producers with approximately 30,000 megawatts of diverse generating capacity, including more than 5,600 megawatts of renewable energy. AEP’s family of companies includes utilities AEP Ohio, AEP Texas, Appalachian Power (in Virginia and West Virginia), AEP Appalachian Power (in Tennessee), Indiana Michigan Power, Kentucky Power, Public Service Company of Oklahoma, and Southwestern Electric Power Company (in Arkansas, Louisiana, east Texas and the Texas Panhandle). AEP also owns AEP Energy, AEP Energy Partners, AEP OnSite Partners, and AEP Renewables, which provide innovative competitive energy solutions nationwide. For more information, visit aep.com.

EU Disability Strategy to improve the lives of people living with a rare disease

EURORDIS-Rare Diseases Europe welcomes the adoption by the European Commission of the Strategy for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities 2021-2030 , as part of the European Union’s commitment to promoting, protecting and ensuring the full enjoyment of human rights by individuals with disabilities and complex needs.

This Strategy is of particular importance to people living with a rare disease and is extremely timely as the coronavirus pandemic continues to exacerbate vulnerabilities. 

Many people with rare diseases live with motor, sensorineural or intellectual impairments and face serious challenges in their activities of daily living, including personal care and other essential tasks. Obtaining an adequate disability assessment remains one of the main obstacles for 53% of people living with a rare disease, who face inadequate assessments (34%) or do not receive an assessment at all despite needing one (19%). This affects timely access to essential tailored support and services, aggravating the high level of psychological, social and economic vulnerability experienced by people living with a rare disease.

EURORDIS particularly welcomes the following priorities of the Strategy, which echo the decade-long plea of the rare disease community and reflect the key recommendations outlined in the EURORDIS’ position paper ‘Achieving Holistic Person-Centred Care to Leave No One Behind ’ (2019) as well as the Rare 2030 multi-stakeholder recommendations on the future of rare disease policy (2021):

  • More awareness and support strategies for patients with disabilities related to rare diseases;
  • Reforms of social protection focusing on persons with disabilities and disability assessment frameworks;
  • Improved labour market outcomes of persons with disabilities, including reasonable accommodation.

“The Strategy marks yet another milestone for 30 million people living with a rare disease in Europe, many of whom live with a disability, which can often be invisible, degenerative, or varies from one day to the next. The lack of recognition of their disability is a major barrier to their participation in society on an equal basis with others. We count on the European Commission to work with Member States to introduce a strong European framework that effectively protects and supports the rights of persons with rare diseases and disability. EURORDIS is ready to contribute to the implementation of the Strategy with concrete ideas and policy recommendations developed with its member community throughout the last few years,” – says Raquel Castro, EURORDIS Social Policy Director.

EURORDIS calls upon the Member States of the European Union to incorporate this Strategy into their national legislation to promote and protect the human rights of persons with disabilities and fulfil their obligations under the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD).

More information:

  • Feedback from EURORDIS-Rare Diseases Europe on the Disability Rights Strategy for 2021-30
  • Strategy for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities 2021-2030
  • Strategy for the rights of persons with disabilities 2021-2030 (Factsheet)
  • The Post-2020 European disability strategy (Study by the European Parliament)